Apple planning monthly iPhone, iPad hardware subscription service - report

Apple iPhone
More than half of Apple's revenue comes from the sale of its phone range. Photo credit: Getty Images

Apple is planning to introduce a monthly subscription service for iPhones and other devices, according to a Bloomberg report.

The website, quoting people who asked not to be identified, said the project was still in development.

"The service would be Apple's biggest push yet into automatically recurring sales, allowing users to subscribe to hardware for the first time - rather than just digital services," Bloomberg said.

The Cupertino-based tech giant declined to comment on the report.

It's also uncertain whether, if true, Kiwis would get access to the service. While those in Aotearoa can subscribe to monthly software services, like Fitness+ and Apple Arcade, not all services are available here.

That includes Apple Card, the company's credit card, and the iPhone Upgrade Program which, for US$35 a month, allows you to trade in your phone for a new one after 12 months.

According to Bloomberg, the move could help Apple generate more revenue, with US$192 billion (NZ$276 billion) already generated annually by iPhones alone.

The report said the monthly subscription could also be used across other hardware, like the iPad, and customers would be able to subscribe via the same Apple ID and App Store account they currently use to subscribe to services.

According to the insiders, it wouldn't operate in the same way as instalment programmes, where the cost is spread over a fixed period of time.

Instead it would be a fee, yet to be determined, based on which devices the user wants to have.

There have been discussions within the company over whether users on the scheme would be able to upgrade their hardware when new models come out, Bloomberg said.

Apple typically has a yearly release schedule for its iPhone and iPad ranges.

According to the website, the subscription service is "expected to launch" at the end of 2022 - however with other priorities, this could end up being delayed, or even cancelled.